Research Centre and the Reading Room

The Research Centre holds written records documenting Australian involvement in war and operational service, as well as the historical background of conflicts in which Australia has been involved and their effects on Australian society. The majority of records held by the Research Centre have not been digitised and can only be viewed by visiting the Research Centre Reading Room, or by requesting copies of collection material.

Changes to the Reading Room

The Research Centre Room has relocated to a temporary building behind Poppy’s café, on the top level of the P1 visitor carpark.

Visits to the Reading Room will be for the purpose of viewing Research Centre collection material only. Researchers are required to request an appointment four weeks in advance to facilitate collection retrieval and delivery. Due to development works there may be times where there are considerable delays or restrictions on collection retrieval, however our staff will notify you if those works affect your request.

Appointments are available for the following sessions:

  • Morning session (Monday to Friday): 10 am to 12.45 pm

  • Afternoon session (Monday to Friday): 1.45 pm to 4.30 pm

  • Afternoon session (Saturday): 1 pm to 4.30 pm

The Research Centre is closed Sunday and ACT public holidays.

Reading Room changes will be in effect for the next three years, due to onsite construction activity relating to the Memorial’s development project. A new Research Centre and Reading Room are included as part of this project. Learn more about these new facilities and our project plans here.

Request an appointment


Researching your family’s military history

Many Commonwealth official records, photographs, diaries and letters can be found in our digital collection.

Due to limited capacity in our temporary Reading Room, we are offering military family history research online and through a phone enquiry service.

You can submit your relative’s personal or service details and research question using the form below. We aim to respond to online enquiries within 10 working days.

Ask a military family history question


Research assistance

Some helpful Research Guides and collection guides can assist you to get started with your research.

Our Reference Officers can be contacted to provide advice about what is in our collections, as well as the collections of related organisations that may benefit your research. Submit an online research enquiry or phone for assistance. We aim to respond to online enquiries within 10 working days.

Ask a question


Request copies of collection material

Many of the records held by the Research Centre are not available in digital format. You can request a cost estimate for the Memorial to digitise Research Centre collection material for you.

Digitised copies will be made available on the Memorial’s website, or are sent by electronic document transfer.

Request a cost estimate for the Memorial to digitise Research Centre collection material by completing the below form. The fee structure for this service is available on About Collection Sales.

Request a copy estimate


Phone enquiry service

Contact the Research Centre on (02) 6243 4315, between 9 am – 5 pm Monday to Friday, excluding ACT public holidays.

We can help with short enquiries over the telephone, however if you have a longer or more complex question, please send us an online enquiry instead.

Acknowledgement of Traditional Custodians

The Australian War Memorial acknowledges the traditional custodians of country throughout Australia. We recognise their continuing connection to land, sea and waters. We pay our respects to elders past and present.